The complicated situation in the Balkans, with the new tensions that have emerged recently between Belgrade, Zagreb and Sarajevo, were at the centre of discussions that Serbian Premier Aleksander Vucic held on Tuesday in Mostar, in the south of Bosnia-Herzegovina, where other regional leaders are also taking part in the 19th International Economic Fair.
Alongside themes of economic and commercial collaboration, the political question will have the upper hand, particularly after the last two sentences from the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in the Hague, against Radovan Karadzic (sentenced to 40 years) and Vojislav Seselj (acquitted), and Croatia’s blocking of Serbia’s EU accession negotiations.
Vucic met two members of the tripartite presidency of Bosnia- the Croat Dragan Covic and the Serb Mladen Ivanic. He then had a meeting with the current chair of the presidency, the Bosnian Muslim Bakir Izetbegovic. Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia Herzegovina all have the duty to guarantee peace and stability in the region for all its citizens, said Vucic. Every time that moments of crisis and worry emerge, that spreads out to the entire region, he observed. “Problems should be resolved and not put under the carpet,” the Serbian Premier said. He is expected to also meet Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic during the day. Other attendants in Mostar include Montenegro President Filip Vujanovic and Turkish Deputy Premier Numan Kurtulmus (Turkey is partner country this year).